Kuala Lumpur – oneworld lounges

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This topic contains 8 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Cloud-9 14 May 2017
at 23:50

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  • IanFromHKG

    I thought I would build this topic based on a reply I made on another topic, in order to help OW travellers going from (or through) KUL. I hope it’s helpful. Note that this was written before the planned upgrade by MH in 2017.

    All the MH lounges in KUL are below par, frankly. For those who don’t know the airport, they are:
    (1) Domestic lounge (Domestic Terminal). Really poor, although better than being not-in-a-lounge. Basic food offering, poor service, adequate seating, no alcohol (in case that’s important!)
    (2) Regional lounge (Main Terminal). Don’t get confused here. For long-haul travellers, the Main Terminal is not the MAIN terminal. The Main Terminal is used primarily for regional routes and LCCs. There is a single regional MH lounge here (i.e. J and F combined, so don’t think your status will get you a better offering). It is pleasant enough though prone to overcrowding, with an basic and uninspiring food offering. Alcohol is offered, although again the range is basic. There is also a spa offering (paid) massage, reflexology etc. There may be showers but I haven’t checked. The high-stool counters by the windows have individual power points which is handy if you need to work. WiFi is adequate.
    (3) Business lounge (Satellite Terminal). As you may have guessed from paragraph (2), the Satellite Terminal – despite sounding rather secondary – is actually the hub for long-haul flights and is therefore MH’s “flagship” base. The MH J lounge is large, reasonably comfortable, and not too prone to overcrowding (at least at the times I have been there). Food offering can best be described as “adequate” but even that would be a polite description. There is again a paid-for spa. There are showers, but I haven’t tried them. However, it is all rather boring and uninspired and soulless. To give you an idea of the overall quality… CX has a combined F/J lounge in the same terminal, which is a fairly typical outstation regional CX lounge – seating quite close together, basic “box”-shape armchairs, limited range of food and drink, but nonetheless the Memsahib preferred it to the MH J lounge for a lengthy layover last month (read also my penultimate paragraph below)
    (4) First lounge (Satellite Terminal). Spacious, uncrowded, comfortable and relaxed (this last statement, however, also applies to the service). Separate dining-room with (limited) a la carte menu. Pleasant staff although a little unpolished and, as you may have gathered, often somewhat slow. Smoking-room, for those who like that sort of thing. The showers (which I haven’t used but have seen) look to me rather like those you might find in a rather faded elderly 3-star hotel – plenty of space, grouting needs to be redone, as do the tiles, floors, countertops, [insert other visible surface here]…. With a fairly basic refurb they would be great but as it is they just look old and tatty. Lounge overall isn’t great for working as there are no desks or high counters, only low tables. If I have to work (as I usually do) I try to stay at one of the dining tables, but recognising that this is unfair on those who may want a table when the restaurant gets fuller (usually in the hour or two before QANTAS flights!) I will also often move to the CX lounge rather than going to the MH business lounge which is right next door (in fact they have a shared reception)

    Although I have access to the F lounge, and if I am there for a mealtime I would almost certainly use the MH F restaurant, I often wander over to the CX lounge if I have to work since it is better for working than the F lounge (desks available, easier WiFi) and I can help myself to drinks rather than having to wait for service.

    Those travelling regionally or long-haul should bear in mind that there is a shuttle train between the Main and Satellite Terminals, which runs every few minutes and takes only a few minutes. No security stops or immigration checks in-between. It is therefore perfectly easy and simply to switch back and forth between those two terminals (obviously the same doesn’t apply for the Domestic Terminal). So if you are leaving from the Main Terminal on a regional flight and want to upgrade slightly, you can shuttle over to the Satellite Terminal (and the CX lounge or, if you are F/OWE and want a meal, the MH F lounge) and be confident that you can get back to the Main Terminal within ten minutes (including waiting for the shuttle train).

    That was the end of my post, but without wanting to blow my own trumpet (much) I would add a helpful response by ASEANTraveller:

    Ian. Agree fully with all your comments above. One thing to add: the best (and this is on a relative basis…) shower facilities in KUL are actually in the Plaza Premium lounge in the Satellite Terminal. Admittedly I have used them only a couple of times and the last time was over a year ago, but it was a meaningful improvement on even the MH F lounge. Bear in mind that there are only 2 showers IIRC. The Plaza Premium lounge is accessible by F/J travellers on the “secondary” airlines serving KUL, but also with a Priority Pass.


    Thankyou Ian. It is 3 or 4 years since I have been to KLIA but I shall be transitting through there 4 times next month! Great timing.

    AFAIR, the MH lounge I last visited was on slightly different levels, with the odd stair deliniating different sections.

    Food so-so, but the GB sockets made up for any shortcomings in the culinary department ?


    Please note that the Regional Lounge (Main Terminal) is under renovation from 12 May until 15 August. During this time, you can use the Golden Lounge or First Lounge in the satellite terminal and in addition the Malaysia Airport CIP lounge, also in the satellite terminal, is available for oneworld members during this time. I hear that once the Regional Lounge is back in operation, then the Golden Lounge in the satellite terminal will undergo renovation.

    Also, the domestic lounge in the main terminal is under renovation during the same period (12 May – 15 Aug).

    Another point to note is that if you use the First Lounge, have a jacket or jumper handy, the air con is fierce!



    Rather better is the private SamaSamaExpress Lounge available in Terminal 2 – and possibly, I think – in all the KLIA terminals.

    Comfortable, normally uncrowded, decent tucker, booze, showers: well worth the entry fee, just RM45, ie less than 10 Euro.

    It also offers hotel rooms.

    If you’re headed over to BKI ( Kota Kinabalu in Sabah ), the MH One World Lounge is OK if you have BAEC Silver etc complimentary access. Otherwise the main hall offerings are better value.


    I shall be staying at the Sama Sama hotel the night before my first flight.

    I am BA Gold: flying to TPE, MEL, LHR from KL. Which do you suggest is best please ?


    BAEC means sticking to OneWorld, of course, and therefore MH would be the obvious choice: I can’t comment on them, as I’ve only flown the MASWings subsidiary, over on Borneo (which was fine).
    But CX is one of the best, if you can get appropriate connections out of KLIA.
    Enjoy SamaSama – I think it means “You’re Welcome” in Bahasa.


    I have stayed at the SamaSama hotel its convenient if nothing else as its connected to the airport.. As airport hotels go there are better but at KLIA this is definitely the place to stay

    As far as flying MH is concerned, good luck with that! I flew them recently to LHR on the 380 service and the whole experience is not pleasant other than the cost!

    If I were you, CX is the only way or indeed QR but would need to head back to DOH I believe


    Sorry: I only advice on which lounge to use at KL! Bearing in mind MH have closed a couple of lounges…

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